Many people strive for success, but are we striving in the right direction?
For some it’s all about selfish ambition, doing anything to reach the top, being the most famous, getting the most sales, having the fanciest car, having the biggest house in the subdivision, most followers on social media, etc. These are the ways of those who are striving in a different direction to get to the top. The challenges they face will be fought in their own power and will.
HOW TO HAVE SUCCESS
There is a God who knows our every need and wants to bless us. He sees our weaknesses and struggles and offers help everyday. Whether it be with our job, our family, our business. In Him there is no striving but resting in His Grace, knowing that whatever challenges you may face, He has already gone before you and by faith we will overcome.
In Joshua 1, God tells Joshua, who is now leading the people after Moses’ death, to “Be strong and courageous” and then He says ” Being careful to do according to all the law that Moses my servant commanded you. Do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may have good success wherever you go.” This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”
God gives us two ways to have success
#1 – OBEDIENCE
Actions speak louder than words, are we who we say we are? Our obedience to God says all.
#2 – READ/MEDITATE ON THE WORD
The Word of God is our roadmap our instructions on how to live a life of success.
“For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.”
The Galatians began to forget the freedom they received when they accepted Christ. Paul is writing to them to challenge them to walk in freedom once again.
In the letters to the Galatians, Paul has to remind the people that circumcision is no longer needed. Jesus had introduced the new concept of Salvation by grace through faith alone. Paul was reminding them that there is no other replacement that would take place of salvation, other than faith in Jesus.
Prior to the arrival of Jesus, every Jewish man had to be circumcised as a symbol of the covenant between God and the people of Israel.
Much like today, some try to achieve good works and kind gestures of earning favor and approval and salvation from God but don’t be deceived. “It was for freedom Christ has set us free”. There is nothing more that we can do to earn more of God’s love or do less to not earn His love. His love was this, He sent His only Son to die a horrible death, “he was led like a lamb to the slaughter…” to bear our sins, past present and future, but He rose on the third day, declaring victory over death, Hell and the grave so that you and I could have eternal life. For this we must choose Him, everyday.
————–Question to ask ourselves
Are there any kind of religious ritual, rule or practice that you engage in as a means of earning approval or favor from God?
Just as Paul was reminding the Galatians, that it is through a relationship that we have this freedom. Have you invited Jesus into your life?
Romans 10:9 “ If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”
We all have those moments/seasons where the hustle and bustle of life, distractions left and right, struggles that seem to get stronger, temptations here and there, But we read in 1 Corinthians 10:13 ” No temptation has overtaken man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation He will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it”.
At times we feel that there is no way out but God always makes a way. How? and why?
Remember not the former things. Nor consider the things of old, behold I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
So the how?
Adversity is a bridge to a deeper relationship with God
Before God can do a new thing in our life, most of the time, God has to break us. What do I mean? let’s read Luke 24
13 Now behold, two of them were traveling that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was seven milesfrom Jerusalem. 14 And they talked together of all these things which had happened. 15 So it was, while they conversed and reasoned, that Jesus Himself drew near and went with them. 16 But their eyes were restrained, so that they did not know Him.
Those men were troubled, they didn’t truly understand what had happened, but we read Jesus drew near.
Anytime that there is adversity we have two choices. We can choose to be distracted by the circumstance and loose focus of where He is at and who He is! Or we can embrace the adversity and look to Him!
28 So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He acted as if he were going farther,29 but they urged him strongly, saying, “Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent.” So he went in to stay with them.30 When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed and broke it and gave it to them.31 And their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. And he vanished from their sight.32 They said to each other, “Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?”
So the why?
It’s always in the breaking when Jesus can do the real work that He is always intending to do, but it takes our obedience which is the key to building your faith.
The Holy Spirit revealed to me that if the men did not bid Him to come, they would not have had that personal encounter that they needed!
We are all in this walk together, a journey called faith but He is drawing Himself near to you and all He is asking is that you would bid Him to come closer. Give Him that issue and trust Him completely.
The Resurrection of Christ brings hope. The late Emil Brunner once said, “What oxygen is for the lungs, such is hope for the meaning of human life.”
As the human organism is dependent on a supply of oxygen, so humanity is dependent on its supply of hope. Yet today hopelessness and despair are everywhere. Peter, who himself was given to despair during the episode of Calvary, writes in a triumphant note, “Blessed be the God and who according to His abundant mercy hath begotten us again into a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus from the dead.”
There is hope that mistakes and sins can be forgiven. There is hope that we can have joy, peace, assurance and security in the midst of the despair of this age. There is hope that Christ is coming soon-this is what is called in scripture “The blessed hope”
Our hope is not in our own ability or in our goodness or physical strength. Our hope is instilled in us by the resurrection of Christ!
You are almost their, almost to the top of that mountain and then you realize when you get to the top that it’s a plateau. Whenever we think we have reached the top you look up and still, there is room to grow, another mountain to climb and other devils to fight.
All those struggles along the way, all of those temptations that have tried to keep you away from reaching that mountaintop. The doubts that you believe and the lies that try to enslave us along the way are doing nothing but clouding your vision from seeing how to climb up that mountain. And the fears that ever so easily control our feelings and thoughts that cripple our strength and faith as we move forward in this race.
But as we get closer, the struggles appear to be more and the temptations are stronger, but God knows how much you can handle, He knows you better than yourself. When we refuse to let go of the rock that is helping us climb this mountain that we are holding onto. We focus upward not looking back but the things that are hoped for that are not yet seen. We believe because we know in whom we have believed. I believe for whatever situation that you are in the Lord is giving you the confidence to do what He has called you to do and the peace to walk in victory over every obstacle that you face.
Can we fly? No, that would be to easy, can we run? Yes, but pace yourself. Can we walk? Yes, but don’t walk to slow. What about if we crawl? We just have to keep moving forward.
We all limit God’s ability to work in our lives, by what we allow Him to do. What do I mean? We choose how much we allow God to do through our surrender. When John wrote “He must increase, but I must decrease.” John knew that it took a life of surrender to see God work in His life. But what are we doing?
God wants to do the impossibles, the unimaginable. The unthinkable. He uses the foolish things of this world to confound the wise. Why? he wants to show you and I just how powerful he is when we say yes to Him. Sounds easy? To cultivate a lifestyle of surrender we must be planted firmly in the Truth, by knowing who He is and His promises we have a better understanding and a more clearer way of trusting in Him when the boat starts rocking.
/// JUST A THOUGHT \\\
When Peter was called out onto the water; how much harder would it have been to step out if Peter did not see Jesus’ miracles beforehand?
I’m 29; hard-headed and very impatient. I like doing things my way and expect it to happen when I want it to happen. This Isn’t how God works and how He does things. While being a Christian for 15 years I still struggle with that thought. He says in His word ” For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord.
In everything we do, we have to believe by faith. Faith is what activates the impossible, it is the delivery system of God. And without it, no man can please God.
Where are you at with your walk with Christ? Are you like me who is impatient and wants things done instantly? Your not alone. We must do 1 thing and it’s this. Put Him first in all things and trust Him with your life. Don’t waver according to popular opinion or what your eyes see, look into the realm of His spirit. How? By faith.
He is the way, trust in Him and He will show you the way!